France fines Uber $900,000 over ride-sharing service
Uber was fined 800,000 euros ($900,000) in France on Thursday, half of which was suspended, over its controversial UberPOP ride-sharing service.
Uber halted the use of UberPOP in France last July amid a storm of opposition to the service from taxi drivers. UberPOP was subsequently banned in France.
In the court case that ended Thursday, the company was charged with "the illegal organisation of a system that puts clients in contact with providers of road transport free of charge".
UberPOP`s chief executive in France, Thibaud Simphal, and the company`s director general in Western Europe at the time the charges were brought, Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty, were fined 30,000 euros and 20,000 euros respectively. Half of those sums were also suspended.
Lawyers for San Francisco-based Uber said the company would appeal "immediately". Uber was also accused of producing advertisements wrongly portraying the service as fully legal.
Prosecutors had called for a maximum fine of 1.5 million euros. Uber has become one of the world`s most valuable startups, worth an estimated $50 billion, as it has expanded to more than 50 countries.